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NReeki
07-23-2009, 09:55 AM
So...what do I say? My (real) name is James, but since I've used ths N. Reeki persona so often, it's like a second name to me.

In any case, I run a (teeny-tiny) RP board, as mentioned in my other post. I'm hoping that I can learn how to edit maps accordingly to an unpredicable RP (such as new land claims, claims taken by war, etc.)

ravells
07-23-2009, 10:30 AM
Welcome to the guild...let's hope there's lots of cross board fertilisation!

Steel General
07-23-2009, 10:59 AM
Welcome Aboard!

töff
07-23-2009, 11:04 AM
learn how to edit maps accordingly to an unpredicable RP (such as new land claims, claims taken by war, etc.)
My one huge piece of advice is to save your source files. In the simplest terms that could be just your original layered photoshop file. You might have other things like 3D renders or Illustrator/Inkscape vectors, too, who knows. But if all you have to work with is flat JPG, your life will be miserable for changes like that.

This is a roundabout way of promoting "non-destructive editing."

Example: Let's say you have a national border running through a field or a forest. Okay, nice little border skirmish, the barons get together and treat ... voila, the border moves. In a flat JPG, your field/forest texture doesn't exist under the border line. You have to erase the border from the old position, and then recreate the texture underneath it. Then, when you draw a new border through, say, a mountain chain, the border line destroys a strip of that texture. In a layered source file, erasing or drawing on one layer doesn't affect the others ... "non-destructive."

It gets complicated in details sometimes, but this is an indispensible approach imho.

Apologies if you knew all that already. But not everybody does, so it's worth saying.

Wanna post your maps? We'd all love to see them. I mean, that's why we're here! :)

töff
07-23-2009, 11:13 AM
Aside ... off-topic ...

In layered maps, I think most of us put sea on the bottom, then basic dry land, then land features such as civlization (towns, roads) and terrain (mountains, forests, rivers) --

Wait, did he just says rivers? By gum, he did! As a layer on top of the basic dry land. And it MOSTLY makes sense to do it that way ...

But this approach, I think, might be one of the "complicated details" that leads to what I call the Estuary Conundrum. Where the rivers meet the sea (and they usually do), you have to blend the river layer (usually one of the topmost) with the sea layer (the bottom-most). And an embarrassingly large number of us otherwise-very-thoughtful mappers, with me at the head of the line, just don't pull this off well.

Has anybody ever tried doing rivers as "long skinny cuts into the dry land" layer? That, too, would have problems ... like how to get a river (thinking against the flow) from a beach up the side of a mountain.

The Estuary Conundrum. There it is. Solve it, and be great!
And post the solution!

Midgardsormr
07-23-2009, 11:38 AM
Create a black-and-white map of your river system and apply it as a layer mask to each land/terrain layer. Now your ocean layer is showing through the land. Intersect the river mask with the ocean mask and add it to a new layer where you can do whatever styling of your rivers that you desire. Touch up the estuaries.

NeonKnight
07-23-2009, 12:24 PM
Welcome to the Guild!

töff
07-23-2009, 12:51 PM
Create a black-and-white map of your river system and apply it as a layer mask to each land/terrain layer. That will work, but it violates one of the precepts I try to follow: never duplicate data. If you have your river map in more than one place, then every time you make a change to it, you have to update all the copies.

If Photoshop had instanced layers or channels, it'd be no problem. Dang, I wanted instances in Illustrator for roadmaps, and now I want them in Photoshop for rivers.

Maybe there's some clever way to get away with just one map/mask. It's worth experimenting with, next time I'm doing rivers.

RPMiller
07-23-2009, 12:57 PM
That will work, but it violates one of the precepts I try to follow: never duplicate data. If you have your river map in more than one place, then every time you make a change to it, you have to update all the copies.

If Photoshop had instanced layers or channels, it'd be no problem. Dang, I wanted instances in Illustrator for roadmaps, and now I want them in Photoshop for rivers.

Maybe there's some clever way to get away with just one map/mask. It's worth experimenting with, next time I'm doing rivers.

But the layer mask is only one place. Isn't it? You wouldn't need a separate river layer is the mask was masking out the land to show water.

Immolate
07-24-2009, 12:20 AM
Welcome NReeki. Your post has been hijacked by the river people. Bad river people. Now go mask your conundrums somewhere else!

Just kidding. It is a great honor for a river war to break out on your post.